London: Manchester United have the highest wage bill in the Premier League, according to figures released on Monday. United paid out a total £214.8 million ($324 million) on salaries in the 2013-14 season, while English champions Manchester City's wage costs dropped last season to £205 million.

Chelsea, currently top of the Premier League, paid £190.5 million, up eight per cent from £176 million, according to the club's annual accounts which were lodged at Companies House this week. Arsenal are next in the pay league with a total wage bill of £166.4 million, while the scale of Southampton's recent success is illustrated by the fact that their wage bill was a fraction of their top-four rivals.

The latest figures available for 2012-13 show the Saints, currently third in the Premier League after beating United on Sunday, paid out just £47.1 million in salaries.

Chelsea's accounts confirm the club's announcement in November that they made a £18.4 million profit last season. Sales of several players, including Juan Mata to United, allowed the club to overturn a £49.4 million loss on the season before and should make them assured to comply with UEFA's financial fair play rules.